Document Processing and Innovations in Intelligent Character Recognition (ICR) Over the Past Decade

With automation coming to the forefront of technology trends in 2023, document scanning technologies are rising in popularity. ICR and OCR technology removes the manual process of physically searching documents, increasing efficiency and accuracy along the way. How can these technologies streamline your business? Let’s find out. 

What is ICR?

Intelligent character recognition (ICR) allows users to scan and translate different styles of handwriting and fonts into searchable, indexable, readable text, which is then stored in a database. Due to ICR’s adaptive nature, the technology is a great investment in any industry that manages and wants to digitize a plethora of consumer records, paperwork, handwritten notes in an accurate and time efficient manner. 

ICR vs. OCR 

A predecessor of ICR, Optical Character Recognition (OCR), also known as text recognition, scans images (or documents), identifies letters on the image, and strings them into words and sentences. The result is an image that can now be easily searched, edited and changed. OCR typically uses hardware like an optical scanner to read text, as well as software to handle document processing. By leveraging artificial intelligence, one can use OCR for more complex use cases such as recognizing and processing different handwriting or font styles. The use of artificial intelligence is what differentiates ‘intelligent’ character recognition from optical character recognition.

Several industries are adopting ICR technology to digitize physical documents

Researchers estimate the ICR/OCR market to be valued close to $40 billion by 2030, largely in part due to a variety of industries adopting this technology to automate workflows & boost productivity. For instance, some uses of ICR are the following:

  • Financial institutions leverage ICR to scan cheques, loan applications, and forms.
  • Landlords can leverage ICR to verify e-rental agreements. 
  • Schools use ICR to review handwritten assignments. 

ICR makes it convenient for healthcare professionals to access vital, accurate patient information in a matter of minutes, which can make a huge difference in quality of care, especially during medical emergencies. Leveraging ICR for your business can also make it more accessible to all users. And finally, within the realm of insurance, ICR automates manual document processing, saving employees hours, if not days of manual work, while cutting down the time taken to process medical claims. 

Wisedocs reduces the time taken to process medical record claim files by 70%

Wisedocs’ proprietary ICR processes over 750 pages worth of documents an hour to create fully searchable case files that are ready for review. Our artificial intelligence not only recognizes and processes a variety of document types and handwriting styles, but also outfits every case file with our DocList, a clickable medical record index which makes navigating to the relevant medical records a breeze. We have not only made medical records processing easy and error-free for our clients, but have also saved them hours of manual labor, and additional costs due to manual error. Finally, Wisedocs is also HIPAA and PHIPA compliant, making it secure to upload and store medical records within North America. 


Our industry leading, document processing platform has helped clients automate 90% of their workflows, expand their business into new verticals, empower a remote workforce, and go 100% paperless. If interested in seeing if Wisedocs is right for you, get in touch.


Note: Thanks to the Wisedoc team for the thought leadership/ Educational article above. Wisedoc has supported this Content.

Founder and CEO at Wisedocs | Website | + posts

Connor Atchison is the Founder and CEO of Wisedocs, the smart way to review medical records. Connor is an experienced founder with a demonstrated history of working in health services, information technology, and management consulting. He aims to digitize a formerly manual industry through the adoption of artificial intelligence and machine learning to support tedious processes. As a former veteran with 12 years of military service under the Department of National Defence, he strives to change the process for filing health insurance and disability claims for insurance, legal, medical evaluators, and their claimants

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